Infant Observation: Creating Transformative Relationships

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9781782200758: Infant Observation: Creating Transformative Relationships
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Seminal and representative papers have been chosen to illustrate the vital importance of infant observation in psychoanalytic training, tracing influences on the practice of infant observation and contemporary developments. The book outlines the thinking that has evolved since Esther Bick's introduction of this innovative component in Tavistock child psychotherapy and British Psychoanalytical Society training.

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About the Author:

Frances Thomson-Salo

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"This is a rich and enlightening book, both emotionally engaging and scholarly. It builds on previous writings on infant observation, and is superbly more than an edited book. Seminal papers are reproduced but Thomson-Salo’s introductions to each contain her own original thinking. Key points are connected with psychoanalytic and other writers. The reader feels deeply immersed in the experience of, and the thinking about, infant observation. Reading this book is transformative. The book is also challenging. There is a critique of the process; problematic and ethical issues are raised. Teachers and students of infant observation will be re-inspired, other professionals encouraged to take it on. A wider group working with mothers and babies, who do not have the opportunity to do a specific observation, may notice more about the emotions of their clients, and become more aware of and able to deal with the feelings stirred up by their work." (Dr Dilys Daws, Honorary Consultant Child Psychotherapist)

"Babies are designed to pull at our heart strings. So are our theories. This book traces the contribution of infant observation to adult and child psychoanalysis and psychotherapy, recurrently addressing the underpinning question – how to enter imaginatively into the dynamic experience of another, and thoughtfully engage with the impact of unconscious mental content, without either becoming overwhelmed by the powerful feelings aroused or retreating into our own theoretical safe ground to contain these. By setting infant observation within its historical context and tracing its expansion within different psychoanalytic schools of thought across continents, in socio-culturally, linguistically diverse, and increasingly non-traditional family constellations, this volume challenges our complacency." (Professor Joan Raphael-Leff, Psychoanalyst and Social Psychologist)

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